SC warrant against me unconstitutional: Justice Karnan

Kolkata/New Delhi: Justice C.S. Karnan of the Calcutta High Court on Friday said the Supreme Court-issued bailable warrant against him in a contempt case was "unconstitutional" and a deliberate attempt "to ruin my life" as a Dalit judge.

"The bailable warrant issued today ... will be stayed. They have no locus standi to issue a warrant against me. It is unconstitutional," he told the media in Kolkata, hours after a seven-judge Constitution bench headed by Chief Justice Jagdish Singh Khehar asked the West Bengal police chief to serve the warrant to Justice Karnan and sought his presence before it on March 31. 

Karnan said it was an "arbitrary order deliberately issued against me to ruin my life. "A Dalit judge (is being) prevented from doing work in a public office. That is atrocity."

He alleged that he was being targeted after he made representation to Prime Minister Narendra Modi about some judges who had committed "illegal activities".

Justice Karnan had in January named 20 "corrupt judges", seeking probe against them to curb "high corruption" in the Indian judiciary. The letter invited contempt proceedings against him.

He said as a "separate constitutional office... I am giving order to the Director (of) Central Bureau of Investigation to conduct detailed inquiry on the basis of my order against the erring judges". 

Earlier, the Supreme Court ordered warrant against him after Attorney General Mukul Rohatgi told the apex court that Justice Karnan had refused to appear before the court. 

The court said the Registry of the Supreme Court had received a text message from Justice Karnan on March 8, "seeking a meeting with CJI and other judges so as to discuss certain administrative issues which primarily seem to reflect allegations against certain judges.

"The letter can't be considered as response to contempt petition. In view of the above, there is no alternative but to ensure his presence in the court by issuing bailable warrant." 

IANS